- For Teachers
We have today released an upgrade to the advanced text analyser that allows you to export data and results from your text analysis results.
A new and expanded PDF Lesson Plans section has recently been launched which brings you an improved user interface and allows easier navigation of our free downloadable PDF lesson plans and handouts.
We've just launched an upgrade to the idioms section of UsingEnglish.com that makes it much simpler and easier to use.
We've just added the ability for you to quiz yourself on intransitive, separable and inseparable phrasal verbs. This quiz type complements our existing quizzes on phrasal verbs and other grammar topics. We hope you enjoy them. :-)
The Site Diary has been quiet for some time now, but there has been a lot of work going on behind the scenes to improve UsingEnglish.com and to build a base for the future. Here I will attempt to catalogue the key developments that have been made to the site over the last few months, and explain what they may mean for the future.
Our new Idioms News Feed allows you to keep updated and ensure you are instantly alerted of all the latest idiom definitions added to UsingEnglish.com.
Just a quick note to say that our Advanced Text Analyser now includes a Graded Text analysis section. You can now compare your text to the BNC and GSL word lists and discover more about the reading level of the text. More information about this will follow shortly.
We've made some changes to the Teacher Handouts section which we hope will make it easier to print and use these materials in class.
The new Reading Comprehension section has just had a bit of a face-lift. We have now reorganised how the section is presented and made it easier for you to test yourself on specific types of exams.
We've just updated our free Irregular Verb List software to include the complete list of all 618 verbs contained on-site.
We have been hard at work making improvements to the Advanced Text Analyser we have here at UE. The new version of the advanced analyser is finally here!
Just a quick note to say that we've just added a new area to our Members' Area. It shows statistics about what our members have been looking at, allowing you to see the most popular Members' Area content.
We have just released a brand new Reading Comprehension section. This area contains a selection of text-based reading comprehension exercises, many of which are based on ESL examination questions including Cambridge ESOL, TOEFL, IELTS and other major exams.
We have made a number of improvements to UsingEnglish.com over the last few weeks, some of which have gone unannounced. This is a summary of the main areas which we've added to or updated recently.
We have just created a What's New area on UsingEnglish.com which allows you to access all of the latest content added to the site. You can view the new content by category or over time.
Following the tradition of a million other blogs on the net, we're going to be switching our blog and forum RSS subscription format to FeedBurner. This will make the feeds more accessible to the wide variety of readers out there and not limit it to just RSS. It'll also allow us to have click-through analytics on users who come through the feed. I'll keep you informed of our progress by posting updates here.
We have just upgraded and rebranded our ESL Web Directory, which now allows you to review sites and keep a personal list of bookmarks for your favourite sites. You can also subscribe to update newsletters for the whole directory, or for specific categories within it.
The last couple of days have seen a massive change to the phrasal verbs reference area. Along with a new tabbed interface and improved navigation, we've updated the design of the pages and added loads of new features!
New features in the quiz results pages allow you to view relevant grammar topics and other similar quizzes.
New features include:
We've just added a 'Word Frequency Cloud' to the advanced text analyser. The word frequency cloud shows each word in a bigger or smaller text size, depending on how many times it is found in the text. The bigger the word, the more frequently it occurs.
We have just made a new version of the UsingEnglish.com glossary live.
New features include:
We have just completed the first step towards revamping the members' area. Both the main page and the Idioms area have been completely redesigned, giving improved navigation and additional features.
The members' area text analyser has had a major revamp, improving both the presentation and the functionality of the tool. Options to show/hide common words, show/hide descriptions and show/hide single-occurrence words
We've just released an update to our word analysis tool, the Word Checker. It is now faster and provides much more information about the word you are researching.
We have just completed another major overhaul, this time to the public English Idioms area. Presentation and navigation have been improved, and extra functionality added.
We have just completed a major overhaul of the members' area Irregular Verbs section, including brand new ways to view the list and a new printable verb list.
We are currently re-vamping the shop area of UsingEnglish.com. A major overhaul of the user interface is being undertaken, which has already yielded dramatic changes to the area's usability.
We are pleased to announce that we've created a new page where you can access all of UsingEnglish.com's RSS newsfeeds from one easy location. Simply go to the RSS Newsfeeds page and select the feeds you require. We've also added a number of additional feeds to those available.
We've just completed a full audit of our ESL links database. This basically means that we've now checked every single link in the database for broken links and 404 (page not found) errors. Where possible we have tried to update the listings with the correct url. Naturally enough, we were not able to correct all links and so it was necessary to remove about 100 broken links.
We have changed the presentation in Phrasal Verbs in order to handle the large number of verbs now displayed.
We have just released a new Members' Area section containing references of English Idioms, Slang and Swear Words. Here you can browse through thousands of English expressions and discover their meanings and view usage tips.
As part of our on-going efforts to improve the information and resources provided at UsingEnglish.com, we've just completed a major update to the Irregular Verbs reference area.
Another update to the phrasal verbs reference area has just been released. We now show you a list similar phrasal verbs for each verb in our database.
We've just released an update to the Phrasal Verbs reference area, and added the ability to conduct searches.
Soon, we will be moving to a single login system for UsingEnglish.com which will give you access to all areas of the site. You will no longer have to register for the ESL forum and then register again for the Members' Area!
We've just spent a good deal of time working on the ESL handouts that we provide. We decided that it needed a bit of an overhaul, and as a result we made a few changes.
We have just completed a major overhaul of our Phrasal Verbs area.
The entire Phrasal Verbs glossary has now been databased which allows many more features to be made available, so keep a look out for additions to this fast growing resource.
Happy New Year! :-)
The first stage of our site overhaul is almost over with only a few loose ends to tie up. The design of the site has been simplified and pages are now less cluttered and should load in your browser faster.
I am currently in the process of making changes to the design and structure of this site in order to simplify it and make it clearer and easier to use. I will let you know when the process is complete, after which I will be starting on some fairly major changes and additions to the site, so keep popping in frequently to stay abreast of developments!
Just a quick note to say that the recent upgrade to the forum was completed smoothly with little or no disruption to service. We hope you enjoy using the new software. :-)
We are pleased to announce the new Dictionary of English Idioms, which contains hundreds of definitions of common idioms and idiomatic expressions.
We have recently purchased brand new forum software which will provide everyone here with a large number of new features and tools, and hopefully a more reliable and professional forum.
The reference section is undergoing something of a facelift at the moment.
Recently the online quizzes page has shown erratic behaviour when displaying the list of available quizzes. A few days ago I rewrote the display routine and this seems to have cured the problem.
The Printable Version link is now working again. I've finally tracked down the cause of the problem and it's fixed! What's more, the same issue was effecting other areas of the site which are now also working fully.
We have now added random English language polls to the Teachers and the Handouts pages. Random polls will be displayed on the left of the pages when they are opened in the same way that they appear in Testing.
We have updated the ESL Teacher Handouts, Grammar Worksheets & Printables section. Firstly, we have added a considerable number of new English language quizzes to the section, both in the public and the members' areas.
Due to a temporary loss of data from one of our databases, pages in the Language Quizzes and Teacher Handouts areas of the site have experienced errors. The data has now been restored, and both areas should now be back up and running again.
We are sorry for any inconvenience caused.
We have recently upgraded the MovableType software we use for our blogs. A couple of months ago we started having links posted to dubious websites, including spam and some pornography.
We have now added Prefixes and Suffixes to the results in the Word Checker, which displays prefixes and suffixes used with the stem of the word you have chosen.
We have updated the Polls section of the website.
We have added some search engine links to the results page of the Word Checker. If you click on them, it will carry out the search for the word or phrase you entered. We have started with Google and separated the searches into different areas, so you can compare the usage in different English-speaking countries. You can search Google:
Images | America | Australia | Britain | Canada | Ireland | New Zealand
We have changed the handouts page in the Teachers'Area. The display is different and we have added New and Updated labels.
We have released a new language tool that allows users to enter a word to get grammatical information about it. It gives information on parts of speech, usage, register, style, collocation, meaning and grammar.
When we upgraded our server recently, it would appear that the Members' Area database was corrupted and a number of members were having difficulty in logging in.
We now have a site that offers help for UsingEnglish.com for users who speak Japanese. It gives descriptions of the different sections, written by a Japanese site user, along with links to the various sections.
We have updated the main glossary page to include a categorised listing/directory of key grammar areas.
Join our Members Area to gain access to our growing archive of free printable handouts to use in class for beginner, intermediate and advanced level students.
- Word Count
- Unique Words
- Number of Sentences
- Average Words per Sentence
- Lexical Density (what's this)
- Gunning Fog Readability Index (what's this)
I've just updated the Text Analyser and added some new features; now you can click on a word and get extended information about how it is used. For example:
We have added a Word Frequency Analyser, which can be found in the Members' Area. All you have to do is copy and paste some text into the box and click on the Calculate Now! button.
I've just added another new section to the members area!
A growing selection of quizzes to test your knowledge of the English language
I've finally had a few moments spare to work on developing the first pages of real content for our members area.
We have finally completed maintenance on our Poll section and it is now back online with a new look. :-)
Well I finally resolved the problem with our shop, as I stated earlier, and it's now up and running fully again (and slightly improved).
However, we've had some data files get corrupted in our polls area and so the entire thing is out-of-order! :-( I am currently asking our hosts to restore all of the data for the polls section from backup, and I'll let you know when it's up and running again.
Running a site is never a simple job, you know!
Our shop has been out of action for the last couple of days due to server issues which have now been resolved.
Over the last couple of weeks I have been working on a new navigation system for the site and adding new content.
Today sees the release of a new collection of tips to help you with taking exams and tests.
Today we complete the mammoth task of putting together a compendium of English Phrasal Verbs.
We've added a new language poll section to the site, which contains numerous polls on various aspects of the English language and its use.